Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials (2015)

Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials
Director: Wes Ball
Writer: T.S. Nowlin
Based on: James Dashner’s novel
Sequel to: The Maze Runner
Cast: Dylan O’Brien, Ki Hong Lee, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Kaya ScodelarioDexter DardenAlexander Flores, Jacob LoflandRosa Salazar, Giancarlo Esposito, Patricia Clarkson, Aidan Gillen, Lili Taylor, Barry Pepper, Alan Tudyk
Seen on: 9.10.2015

Plot [with spoilers for the first film]:
Thomas (Dylan O’Brien), Teresa (Kaya Scodelario), Minho (Ki Hong Lee), Newt (Thomas Brodie-Sangster) and Frypan (Dexter Darden) made it out of the labyrinth and are now under the care of the resistance against WICKED, led by Janson (Aidan Gillen). But there is something fishy going on there as well and soon, Thomas and his friends find themselves on the run through a desolate world they barely understand.

Although I didn’t like the first book or film, I decided to give The Scorch Trials a try, fully expecting a bad, but entertaining film. What I got, though, was a bad and painfully boring film that is so stupid it becomes incomprehensible.

mazerunner-scorchtrials

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Snitch (2013)

Snitch
Director:  Ric Roman Waugh
Writer: Justin Haythe, Ric Roman Waugh
Cast: Dwayne Johnson, Barry Pepper, Jon Bernthal, Susan Sarandon, Michael Kenneth Williams, Rafi GavronNadine Velazquez, Melina Kanakaredes, Benjamin Bratt, David Harbour, Harold Perrineau

Plot:
When Jason (Rafi Gavron) is arrested on drug charges that are not really called for, his father John (Dwayne Johnson) tries to bargain with the prosecution to get his sentence reduced. But the prosecution is quite unwilling to help. It’s only when John offers to basically go undercover for them and get some bigger fish arrested, that they agree to help. So John asks his employee and ex-con Daniel (Jon Bernthal) for an introduction into the drug world and soon finds himself a little in over his head.

Snitch isn’t a great movie. But it is quite ok and surprisingly full of social criticism.

snitch

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Broken City (2013)

Broken City
Director: Allen Hughes
Writer: Brian Tucker
Cast: Mark Wahlberg, Russell Crowe, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Jeffrey Wright, Barry Pepper, Alona Tal, Natalie Martinez, Michael Beach, Kyle Chandler, James Ransone, Griffin Dunne

Plot:
Billy (Mark Wahlberg) is a policeman who shot a rapist who went free. During his trial where he claims self-defence, new evidence comes up but is quickly surpressed by Mayor Hostetler (Russell Crowe) and Comissioner Fairbanks (Jeffrey Wright). Despite being found not guilty, Billy is let go and earns his money by doing investigation work from then on. Years later in the middle of election time, Hostetler contacts him again to have him investigate his wife Cathleen (Catherine Zeta-Jones). But there’s apparently more to the story than just mere infidelity.

Broken City was a decent thriller but nothing that really blew me away, apart from Russell Crowe who obviously had fun with this one. The characters are a little too clichéd to work, the story is unfocused and all of that leaves you a little dissatisfied.

broken_city

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Re-Watch: Unknown (2006)

Unknown
Director: Simon Brand
Writer: Matthew Waynee
Cast: Jim Caviezel, Greg Kinnear, Jeremy Sisto, Barry Pepper, Joe Pantoliano, Bridget Moynahan, Peter Stormare, Chris Mulkey, Clayne Crawford, Kevin Chapman, Mark Boone Junior

Plot:
Five men wake up one by one in a locked warehouse. None of them can remember who they are or how they got there. The first to wake up is Jean Jacket (Jim Caviezel). As he looks around he sees a guy with a broken nose (Greg Kinnear), one tied to a chair (Joe Pantoliano), one handcuffed to a rail in obviously very hurt (Jeremy Sisto) and one apparently simply passed out (Barry Pepper). While everybody else is still out cold, Jean Jacket wanders around and receives a phone call through which he fakes his way through. But it is obvious that something shifty is going on and Jean Jacket and everybody else have to figure out what it is and what side they’re on.

I started this movie under the impression that I hadn’t seen it before, but about five minutes in I realized that I had, actually. I couldn’t remember practically anything about it, though – it’s that kind of a movie.

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True Grit (2010)

True Grit is the newest film by Joel and Ethan Coen, based on the novel by Charles Portis and starring Hailee Steinfeld, Jeff Bridges, Matt Damon, Josh Brolin and Barry Pepper.

Plot:
After the murder of her father by Tom Chaney (Josh Brolin), Mattie Ross (Hailee Steinfeld) decides to hire a marshall to track Chaney down and bring him to justice. She finds Rooster Cogburn (Jeff Bridges), a grumpy drunk who has the reputation to be effective. She hires him and, together with Texas ranger LaBoeuf (Matt Damon) who has been tracking Chaney for a while, they set out to get justice.

True Grit is yet another proof of the Coen Brothers Rule: I love every second movie I see by them*. And True Grit is a second film. It was brilliant, with great performances, wonderful cinematography and a nice sense of humor.

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